Impact of Wheat Frontline Demonstrations in India: A Decade of Experience
Satyavir Singh, Anuj Kumar, Sendhil R, Randhir Singh, Mangal Singh, Ramesh Chand and GP Singh (2019). Impact of Wheat Frontline Demonstrations in India : A Decade of Experience. Research Bulletin No: 41, ICAR-Indian Institute of Wheat and Barley Research, Karnal. pp 1-102.
116 Pages Posted: 3 Dec 2020
Date Written: August 25, 2019
Frontline demonstration (FLD) is an adaptive research on the improved varieties and technologies, which is demonstrated by the National Agricultural Research System (NARS) at selected farmers’ fields who will be the beneficiaries of the programme. Wheat is an important cereal crop of India fulfilling food as well as nutritional security of millions. The crop has been under cultivation in around 30 mha with annual production crossing 100 million tonnes in the recent past. Despite India being the second largest producer of wheat, there exists regional variation in production across states as well as agro-climatic zones. FLD on wheat has played a significant role in acreage expansion through variety percolation as well as yield enhancement. The FLD is a planned programme, executed and evaluated with the people, and they are taught and motivated to act. Under the programme, the extension workers act as a catalyst, a change agent who set up the learning situation (demonstration) for the farmers and use them for horizontal dissemination of technology through farmers’ day, print and electronic media. Farmers from the neighbouring villages are invited to interact with the FLD farmers. The programme not only aims at developing the individual but leadership qualities as well so that the users are also benefited. Finally, the findings/impact of the programme is given wide coverage through mass media.
The present bulletin highlights operational guidelines of FLDs, analyse the decadal trends in FLDs allotted, conducted, varieties and technologies demonstrated at farmers’ field across India with the assistance of the cooperating centres, followed by yield gain state wise and zone wise through demonstrations against standard check varieties/technologies. In a span of ten years (2008-09 to 2017-18), it has been estimated that around 5668 FLDs have been conducted to popularise 10 most prominent wheat production technologies including improved varieties (bread, durum & dicoccum) covering an area of 5668 hectares and benefitting 13318 farmers. For conducting the programme successfully at different locations, 83 centres have cooperated from 5 wheat growing zones and the success rate has been estimated at 91.86 per cent. The immediate output of the programme is the realisation of incremental yield and it was found to be 26.68 per cent across all locations and technologies. Barring, Nagaland, Assam, Himachal Pradesh and Tamil Nadu, it was found that the realised yield levels through demonstrations was much higher than the decadal average national yield. Haryana registered the highest mean yield at farmer’s field (5180 kg/ha), followed by Punjab (5110 kg/ha) and Delhi (4880 kg/ha).
The FLD programme has been instrumental in faster dissemination of recent varieties in remotest areas of the country. Among demonstrated varieties, the realised mean yield was highest for HD 3086 (49.43 q/ha) from around 421 demonstrations in north western plains zone. The highest number of demonstrations was for HD 2967 (1511) indicating the most popular and mega variety in the northern plain regions. Among technologies, 502 demonstrations have been conducted for bio-fertilizers, followed by zero tillage (341) and rotavator (81). Regression analysis indicated that the positive impact on yield gain exists due to the demonstration of resource conservation technologies as well as per cent of FLDs conducted. Clearly, the decadal (2008-09 to 2017-18) impact analysis on wheat FLDs at farmers’ field establish the fact that demonstrations carry the successful technologies from lab to land resulting in incremental yield and income security of farmers.
Keywords: FLD, Frontline Demonstration, Cluster Demonstration, NARS, Field Day, Technology Transfer
JEL Classification: O14, O21, O33, O35, O38, Q16, Q55
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